West Penn Power’s 2022 Tree-Trimming Program Underway to Enhance Service Reliability

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Work includes trimming along nearly 5,000 miles of power lines

GREENSBURG, Pa., May 3, 2022 — West Penn Power, a subsidiary of FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE: FE), continues to conduct tree-trimming work in communities across its 24-county Pennsylvania service area as part of its ongoing efforts to help enhance service reliability. Maintaining proper clearances around electrical equipment can reduce the frequency and duration of tree-related power outages, especially those associated with severe weather.

Since the beginning of the year, tree contractors have trimmed along 1,000 miles of electric lines in the West Penn Power service area as part of the company’s $47.3 million vegetation management program for 2022. West Penn Power’s program remains on track to complete an additional 3,900 miles of work by year end.

The tree-trimming program includes inspecting vegetation near the lines to ensure trees are pruned in a manner that helps preserve the health of the tree while also maintaining safety near electric facilities. Trees that present a danger or are diseased also may be removed. 

 “Trimming trees along power lines helps keep the lights on for our customers and allows our line crews to more quickly restore service after storms,” said Scott Wyman, president of FirstEnergy’s Pennsylvania operations. “The work is making a difference. On days without severe weather, tree-related outages disrupted electric service to 17 percent fewer West Penn Power customers in 2021 than in 2020.”  

 The company’s tree program also includes about $2 million to remove approximately 10,000 dead and dying ash trees along distribution lines in western Pennsylvania. Crews have removed about 1,600 ash trees so far this year. In 2021, the company proactively removed more than 125,000 trees that could have come in contact with power lines, including deteriorated ash trees harmed or killed by the Emerald Ash Borer.      

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This year, West Penn Power is scheduled to trim trees along power lines in the following counties and communities:

  • AlleghenyCheswick, Bethel Park, Upper St. Clair, South Fayette Township, Harmar Township, Springdale Township, Springdale, Frazer Township, North Fayette Township, East Deer Township, McDonald, Oakdale, South Park Township
  • ArmstrongKiskiminetas Township, Parks Township, South Buffalo Township, North Buffalo Township, East Franklin Township, Madison Township, Mahoning Township, Redbank Township, Bethel Township, Kittanning, Manor Township, Rayburn Township, Parker City, Boggs Township, Wayne Township, Kittanning Township, Gilpin Township, Bradys Bend Township, Leechburg, Cadogan Township, Valley Township
  • BedfordHyndman, Londonderry Township
  • ButlerButler Township, Center Township, Clay Township, Clearfield Township, Slippery Rock Township, Summit Township, Donegal Township, Fairview Township, Brady Township, Allegheny Township, Parker Township, Muddy Creek Township, Oakland Township
  • Cameron ­– Gibson Township, Lumber Township, Portage Township, Shippen Township
  • CentreBenner Township, Huston Township, Liberty Township, Patton Township, Spring Township, Union Township, Boggs Township, Curtin Township, Howard Township, Unionville, College Township, Halfmoon Township and Worth Township
  • ClarionBrady Township, Madison Township, Perry Township, Porter Township, Richland Township
  • ElkSt. Marys, Benezette Township, Jones Township
  • FayetteConnellsville, South Connellsville, Uniontown, Point Marion, Bullskin Township, Luzerne Township, Washington Township, Connellsville Township, Dunbar Township, Perry Township, Georges Township, German Township, Henry Clay Township, Redstone Township, Springhill Township, Stewart Township, Saltlick Township, Menallen Township, South Union Township, Wharton Township
  • FranklinHamilton Township, Letterkenny Township, Mercersburg, Montgomery Township, St. Thomas Township, Peters Township, Greene Township, Washington Township, Warren Township
  • FultonBethel Township, Belfast Township, Thompson Township
  • GreeneCenter Township, Dunkard Township, Franklin Township, Freeport Township, Gilmore Township, Jackson Township, Jefferson Township, Morgan Township, Morris Township, Whiteley Township, Wayne Township, Clarksville
  • IndianaSaltsburg
  • McKean – Kane, Wetmore Township, Sergeant Township, Norwich Township
  • PotterEulalia Township, Portage Township, Homer Township, Summit Township, Sweden Township
  • SomersetFairhope Township, Southampton Township
  • WashingtonWashington, Canonsburg, Cecil Township, Nottingham Township, Peters Township, Union Township, California, Centerville, Charleroi, Fallowfield Township, Amwell Township, Morris Township, North Bethlehem Township, West Bethlehem Township, Chartiers Township, Cross Creek Township, Jefferson Township, McDonald, North Charleroi Township, Green Hills, East Bethlehem Township, Robinson Township, Canton Township, Finleyville, Houston, Independence Township, North Franklin Township, North Strabane Township, Somerset Township, South Franklin Township, South Strabane Township, Bentleyville, Cokeburg, Ellsworth, West Pike Run Township
  • WestmorelandGreensburg, Hempfield Township, Irwin, Jeannette, Murrysville, Unity Township, Rostraver Township, Sewickley Township, Delmont, Scottdale, Bell Township, Upper Burrell, Washington Township, Derry, Derry Township, Penn Township, Allegheny Township, East Huntingdon Township, South Huntingdon Township, North Huntingdon Township, Salem Township, Manor, Vandergrift, West Leechburg, Ligonier Township, Monessen, Cook Township, Donegal Township, Mount Pleasant Township, Unity Township, Fairfield Township, St. Clair Township, Washington Township, Loyalhanna Township, Smithton
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As part of its notification process, West Penn Power works with municipalities to inform them of tree-trimming schedules. In addition, customers living in areas along company rights-of-way also are notified prior to vegetation management work being done.

The vegetation management work is conducted by qualified line clearance arborists under the company’s direction, including Asplundh Tree Expert Company, Jaflo Inc., Lewis Tree Service Inc., Penn Line Service Inc., Davey Tree Expert Company and Townsend Tree.

West Penn Power serves approximately 725,000 customers in 24 counties within central and southwestern Pennsylvania. Follow West Penn Power on Twitter @W_Penn_Power and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/WestPennPower.

FirstEnergy is dedicated to integrity, safety, reliability and operational excellence. Its 10 electric distribution companies form one of the nation’s largest investor-owned electric systems, serving customers in Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, West Virginia, Maryland and New York. The company’s transmission subsidiaries operate approximately 24,000 miles of transmission lines that connect the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions. Follow FirstEnergy online at www.firstenergycorp.com and on Twitter @FirstEnergyCorp.

Editor’s Note: Photos of workers using bucket trucks to trim trees near FirstEnergy power lines are available for download on Flickr. A video explaining FirstEnergy’s vegetation management techniques can also be found on YouTube.

SOURCE FirstEnergy Corp.